Last year at this time, I was on full-blown chemo, low in weight/strength, and pretty much bald. So, running in the Scope it Out 5K was not really an option -- due to the factors other than baldness. I walked the entire thing in about an hour...strolling along the water, listening to the birds chirping. Who am I kidding? The birds were all dead because it was so cold that morning!
This year, I was now on "chemo-lite" pills, almost back to normal weight, as strong as ever in my life...and full of hair (like Austen Powers). Running was now an option, but just how far I didn't know. I started off pretty well. Everyone was in my way, so instead of weaving and making it 3.2 miles vice 3.1, I jumped to the sidewalk and ran there. If any security people would have told me to get back on the road, I was totally prepared to pull the cancer/chemo card (still in my wallet in the car, but they didn't know that.) Eventually, the log-jam cleared and I went back to the streets. At about mile one, Jess caught up to me (I was slowing) and we did about a 1/3rd of a mile together, but I had to stop and walk a little.
After that, I walked for a block and ran for a couple of blocks for the rest of the race. Around mile 2, a fan was cheering who was wearing a pitt jacket. I yelled, "go pitt" and he smiled (even though Pitt had lost the night before on a last second shot. Ugh.) I kept going. While I approached five blocks to go, I was thinking, "do I run one more, walk one, and then run three? Or run two, walk one, run 2?" Just then I heard my name called. I looked back and Erin was catching me. I didn't even know she was in the race. She caught up and I told her to keep talking, but I wasn't going to talk. She kept me running the next four blocks without walking. With one to go, I said "come on." She knew what I meant and we sprinted the last block (or what felt like a sprint to me). I finished at 33:02. After I stopped, my legs were so limp that I had to hold on to people. Plus, blisters on both feet after mile 2. Ugh.
During this race I still didn't hear any birds. Must have been my gasping for air that was blocking out the chirps.